Excerpt: It is a textbook mixed bag, in which every pro has a con, every clever device has a counterbalancing shopworn cliche, and every carefully dodged trope is offset by a moment of utter obviousness. It’s a good time that you feel bad about (not even after, but during), and while you can certainly imagine that writer/director Harmony Korine was going for that kind of queasiness, it doesn’t make it any easier to swallow, or stomach.
Excerpt: Korine’s gotten perfectly natural performances from Disney girls in very unfamiliar surroundings, but the film’s greatest acting asset is James Franco, going for broke in his own “Killer Joe” role.
Excerpt: Some critics have taken these early scenes as an attempt by Korine at some ‘stinging’ moralistic commentary. But up until now, Korine has proven to be more of a cinematic vandal, the kind of prankster one would expect to scrawl on a piece of celluloid with the metaphorical equivalent of a graffiti tag rather than flesh out a fully realized thought about our culture. And there’s nothing wrong with that.
Excerpt: But I’m going to call this movie what it really is: just another way to see young womens’s boobs and behinds splattered across the screen in a gratuitous nature that offers nothing to the story (or lack thereof).
Excerpt: (Harmony) Korine assimilates this familiar style and subject matter to get on the same wavelength as the pop culture he’s representing, only to then infiltrate the underlying misogyny, racism, and soullessness of such imagery.
Excerpt: Uneven as “Spring Breakers” is, the whole movie is worth it for the scene of James Franco, in full ghetto-fabulous splendor, sitting at an outdoor piano, playing a Brittney Spears ballad as the sun sets over Florida.
Excerpt: Harmony Korine’s arthouse exploitation picture Spring Breakers is as complicated as it is perplexing, inspiring a complex reaction that is a combination of voyeuristic scandal and general queasiness. This chronicle of four girls on a runaway week in Florida has the empty calories of bubblegum, the allure of neon, and the rhythm of trance music.
Jerry Roberts @ Armchair Cinema
Excerpt: The pieces are in place, but the story lacks purpose.
Excerpt: Spring Breakers is ultimately all show. It’s a pointless, shallow movie wrapped in the hard-core dressings of a serious R-rated sex-crime fantasy. Spring Break has never felt so lame and dispirited.
Excerpt: For all its faults, the movie works because Harmony Korine finally embraces the fact that he is at heart an exploitation movie director working with an arthouse movie toolkit, not the other way around.